248 | Investigating the Impact of Prepubertal 17β-Estradiol Exposure on Behavioral Traits Relevant to Psychiatric Conditions

Neuroendocrinology and Neuroimmunology

Author: Macarena Sol Maldonado | Email: maldonado.macarenasol@gmail.com

Macarena Sol Maldonado , Amaicha Mara Depino , Araceli Seiffe

1° Facultad de Ciencias Exactas y Naturales, UBA
2° Instituto de Fisiología, Biología Molecular y Neurociencias, UBA-CONICET

Psychiatric disorders exhibit sex-related differences in their prevalence. Conditions like autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are more prevalent in men, and anxiety and depression more prevalent in women. However, the mechanisms underlying this bias remain poorly understood.
During mammalian perinatal development, gonadal sexual hormones play a key role in organizing neural circuits, leading to sexual dimorphisms in the brain and sex-specific behaviors in adulthood. While these hormonal effects have traditionally been considered exclusive to the organizational period, emerging evidence suggests that the prepuberty may also be involved in the organization of neural circuits. In fact, on this critical window, from postnatal day 21 to 35, the hormonal profiles significantly differ between sexes. This period is particularly relevant, as we have previously shown that different environmental interventions during this phase have enduring effects on behaviors relevant to psychiatric disorders.
We examine the effects on adult behavior of male and female mice of daily administration of 17?-estradiol during the period we suggested as critical. Particularly, we assess anxiety, depression, and sociability-related behaviors, aiming to uncover biological mechanisms in distinct psychiatric disorders prevalence. This research promises insights into sex-specific influences on such disorders, potentially leading to targeted interventions.